High levels of PFAS chemicals have contaminated a plastics recycling company in Henderson, Kentucky, spreading through the air and water and likely contaminating a creek that flows into the Ohio River, state officials say.
The company, Shamrock Technologies Inc., notified state regulators about the problem after hiring a consultant to screen for the pollution three years ago.
State records obtained by WFPL News through a records request show the extent of the pollution at the site, where PFAS levels rival those found at EPA Superfund sites on military installations across the country, but get far less attention.
State officials are still trying to gauge the extent of the pollution offsite. As recently as last year, scientists discovered PFAS chemicals outside of Shamrock’s facilities, in the soil and groundwater nearby, as well as in a creek that flows into the Ohio River, a drinking water source for millions of people.
The existence of the so-called “forever chemicals” in other communities has led to billions spent on cleanup costs, personal injury litigation and environmental monitoring. To date, state testing has not found PFAS levels above federal standards in Henderson’s drinking water or at private wells near Shamrock facilities.
The consulting firm hired by Shamrock found the pollution in nearly every sample they gathered and noted concerns the pollution could migrate offsite, records show.
~sWFPL, 16 August 2021